Louisiana's Democratic Governor Fights for Re-election in Republican-Leaning State

The New York Times Politics 2 months ago

(Reuters) - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a conservative Democrat who supports gun rights and opposes abortion, is fighting for a second term in a conservative-leaning state, with President Donald Trump set to rally with the leading Republican contenders ahead of Saturday's vote.

Edwards is the only Democratic governor of a Deep South state. Trump, seeking to end that anomaly, is asking voters to choose either Eddie Rispone, a businessman, or U.S. Representative Ralph Abraham. On Friday, Trump will appear with both men for a rally in Lake Charles.

"Keep Democrat Governor Edwards under 50%, force a runoff, and have a great new Republican Governor!" Trump wrote this week on Twitter.

Louisiana has an unusual primary election system in which all candidates appear on the same ballot, regardless of party affiliation. If no candidate wins an outright majority in Saturday's vote, a run-off election between the top two will be held on Nov. 16.

Edwards was a U.S. Army captain and a lawyer before being elected to the Louisiana House of Representatives in 2008. He became governor after winning 56 percent of the vote against David Vitter, a Republican, in 2015.

While Democrats in the state were energized back then at the thought of reclaiming the governorship, their affection may dimmed when Edwards signed one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country earlier this year. An observant Roman Catholic, Edwards made it illegal to abort a pregnancy after 15 weeks.

"Governor Jon Bel Edwards is one of the most conservative governors in the South despite having the label 'Democrat' behind his name," Christie Maloyed, an associate professor of political science at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, said in a telephone interview. The abortion law might mean registered Democrats are less likely to turn out for Saturday's first round of voting, she said.

Rispone is little-known entrepreneur who founded a construction company and describes himself to voters as a "conservative outsider."

Abraham worked as a veterinarian and then as a family doctor before being elected to represent Louisiana in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2014.

Both Rispone and Abraham have touted their kinship with Trump and have appeared at rallies with Trump's son Donald Trump Jr., and his vice president, Mike Pence, in recent days.

Edwards has generally avoided criticizing Trump, saying the two have worked well together on criminal justice reform.

(Reporting by Jonathan Allen in New York; Editing by Frank McGurty)


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One America News Network › 2 months ago
(Reuters) - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a conservative Democrat who supports gun rights and opposes abortion, is fighting for a second term in a conservative-leaning state, with President
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The New York Times › Politics › 3 weeks ago
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Reuters › Politics › 3 weeks ago
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a conservative Democrat, has won re-election to a second term, according to media reports, narrowly defeating a Republican opponent who had tightly aligned himself with U.S. President Donald Trump.
One America News Network › 3 weeks ago
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a conservative Democrat, has won re-election to a second term, according to media reports, narrowly defeating a Republican opponent who had
CBS News › 1 month ago
President Trump railed against Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards, the South's only Democratic governor, in a fiery rally Wednesday night for Edwards' opponent, Eddie Rispone. Weijia Jiang reports from the rally in Monroe, Louisiana.
The New York Times › Politics › 1 month ago
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a conservative Democrat seeking a second term, will face a Republican businessman in a run-off vote on Nov. 16 after failing to secure outright victory in an election on Saturday.
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Donald Trump is planning another visit to Louisiana as Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards pulls ahead of Republican challenger Eddie Rispone in polls just weeks ahead of Election Day. Trump already made one recent visit to Louisiana ahead of the...
Reuters › Politics › 1 month ago
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a conservative Democrat seeking a second term, will face a Republican businessman in a run-off vote on Nov. 16 after failing to secure outright victory in an election on Saturday.
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Louisiana voters will decide on their next governor next month. The state held a "jungle primary" Saturday; incumbent Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards will run against Republican businessman Eddie Rispone in the runoff November 16.
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